Author Topic: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails  (Read 6503 times)

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Online nogodsforme

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #116 on: December 03, 2011, 10:09:12 PM »
Especially the puppy dogs.
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #117 on: December 04, 2011, 02:37:19 AM »
Ok maybe I can clarify my position here....

Yep,  sounds pretty much what I said here:
Screwtape's analogy is flawed, because the "better information" in this case was that the person he saw that was introduced to him as "Santa" was never actually the real Santa.  Similarly, anyone who claims to have been influenced by the Holy Spirit once, but who now realises it was not really the Holy Spirit, is totally correct.....it WASN'T the Holy Spirit.  They WERE never visited by the Spirit, so WERE never Truly Born Again, no matter what they thought at the time.  If Screwtape had been taken to see the REAL Santa, then he would never have lost his belief.

Once a Christian, always a Christian.  If you ain't one now, you were never really saved in the first place.  We get it, that's your argument.  So now....

Except.....all that we can therefore conclude from that argument is that we can only reliably identify the people who were NOT really visited by the Spirit, because they have now realised it was all a fake.  It gives us NO way of determining who "really has", and who simply "still just THINKS they have.

And that poses two rather nasty questions for the believer.  Because what they are saying is that someone who is a good Christian, a regular churchgoer, and who believes they have been Born Again By The Spirit.....has no way of knowing whether they really HAVE been, or if they are just deluded.  And so the two rather nasty questions are:

1) So you think you are Born Again?  How do you KNOW you aren't just deluded?

2) What kind of a god picks out a good follower, who honestly believes they have done everything right and been blessed by the Spirit.....and DOESN'T then send the Spirit to make that experience real?

I put it to YOU, Onesteward, that YOU have not been really saved - you just think you have, and deluded yourself in exactly the same way that Velkyn and others did.  The only difference between you and them is that you have not yet realised it is a delusion.

Of course, the simple counter to this that would collapse my argument is for you to present - as repeatedly requested - some test, or sign, that could be applied to someone professing to have been saved, to determine whether they actually HAD received this gift from god, or if they were just deluded into thinking they had received such a gift.  And I look forward to you explaining how we do that.

Unfortunately, until then.....the only two groups we have are these:
1) The people who KNOW they were deluded in the past (Velkyn et al), and
2) The people who may or may not be deluded at this point in time.
If group 2 are unable to prove they are NOT deluded, and you are agreeing with us that the people in group 1 who used to be in group 2 were all deluded.....I'm afraid there is only one reasonable conclusion about the state of the people in that second group.....
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
Why is it so hard for believers to answer a direct question?

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #118 on: December 04, 2011, 04:56:01 AM »

Unfortunately, until then.....the only two groups we have are these:
1) The people who KNOW they were deluded in the past (Velkyn et al), and
2) The people who may or may not be deluded at this point in time.
If group 2 are unable to prove they are NOT deluded, and you are agreeing with us that the people in group 1 who used to be in group 2 were all deluded.....I'm afraid there is only one reasonable conclusion about the state of the people in that second group.....

Now I understand the mastery of the epistle of James. He details faith and dead faith, but avoids talking about 50% faith, or deluded faith.

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Offline onesteward

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #119 on: December 04, 2011, 04:48:25 PM »
If we no longer believe in god, what else would you call us if not atheists? We used to, but no longer do any of the things that Christians do, ie believe that god exists, that Jesus is his son and the savior, that prayer is communication with god, etc.
  So you look back to the time when you did believe those things as a time when you were deluded?Those things aren't true now and have never been true? Is that in the ball  park?


 Dan Barker devoted his entire life to it for 19 years, publicly as an evangelist, musician and minister. Either he was a major con artist, one hell of an actor, had a psychotic break, or he really truly believed in it! Occam's Razor suggests he was a believer. Like the rest of us.  Are we all still Christians then?

 As an Assemblies of God minister I'd have to assume he would be on board with this from the AG website:

 Confess that Jesus is your Lord. "If you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord,' and believe in your heart." Romans 10:9 (See verse 10.) that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved

 He did make this claim as well..."I personally led many people to Jesus Christ,"which I would guess included "born again', certainly in the AG church anyway.


If a person can be a Christian without believing in god, Jesus or prayer, why bother doing any of those things?
That is my point nogodsforme, you can't.Your 'non-belief' would have to be "retroactive' wouldn't it? You say there was never a God or Jesus as savior.How then does an atheist proclaim that they "used to be" Christian? The very essense of what a Christian is according to atheists never existed.



If a person was ever a Christian, they remain a Christian forever no matter what they say, do or believe. Is that what you are saying? Please explain.
No, that isn't what I'm saying.Rational people have been delivered from the delusion is the claim.If, instead of Christianity, they were delivered from believing themselves to be George Washington you would expect the stories of being at Valley Forge to cease, am I correct in that? One wouldn't say for instance" Boy, it's sure nice being alive in the 21st century!Way better that when I was alive in the 1700s!
When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
when sorrows like sea billows roll;
what ever my lot, you have taught me to say
it is well, it is well with my soul.

Horatio Spafford

Offline onesteward

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #120 on: December 04, 2011, 04:54:13 PM »
Once a Christian, always a Christian.  If you ain't one now, you were never really saved in the first place.  We get it, that's your argument.  So now....

Actually you don't get it . At all. That wouldn't be my argument because I'n not of the Reformed  school of thought on that subject.
When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
when sorrows like sea billows roll;
what ever my lot, you have taught me to say
it is well, it is well with my soul.

Horatio Spafford

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #121 on: December 05, 2011, 01:21:44 AM »
You say there was never a God or Jesus as savior.How then does an atheist proclaim that they "used to be" Christian? The very essense of what a Christian is according to atheists never existed.

Err.. Because the gospel of John states that all you have to do is believe that Jesus was the messiah and did miracles. If you do so, then you walk the path of light, irrespective of how deluded that is.

Also, because the gospel of Mat, Mark, Luke, infer that you are a Christian if you (1) love God, (2) follow the most important Jewish laws, and Love thy Neighbour, then you are doing a Christ's work, and will therefore get Brownie points. The synoptic places Jesus as a teacher, not a God. You can be a Christian without believing that Jesus existed, since the most important rules he specifies do not involve him. This is similar to being a Buddhist without believing Buddha existed.

To resolve the problem that John created, James then says you can't just go around believing Jesus was your saviour, you have to show how much you believe, by doing works... though, he luckily does not specify that you have to do any miraculous works.

We'll concede that ex-Christians were never graced by God, because God does not exist. However, Christianity is formulated in a way which requires no proof of God gracing you. All it requires is that you love an imaginary God, and follow the revised laws.

There is no test you can do to prove that you are graced, because the makers of Christianity knew that the religion would flop, if you took the test.

Humans, in general, don't waste any opportunity to be unfathomably stupid - Dr Cynical.

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #122 on: December 05, 2011, 03:58:50 AM »
Err2... I'm not entirely convinced by OS's mobius-strip-style argument, that God does not exist for atheists. By atheist logic, they could not have been Christians, but this presupposes that atheists are correct. If atheists are correct, then OS should SO.
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Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #123 on: December 05, 2011, 07:33:36 AM »
Once a Christian, always a Christian.  If you ain't one now, you were never really saved in the first place.  We get it, that's your argument.  So now....

Actually you don't get it . At all. That wouldn't be my argument because I'n not of the Reformed  school of thought on that subject.
Rational people have been delivered from the delusion is the claim.If, instead of Christianity, they were delivered from believing themselves to be George Washington you would expect the stories of being at Valley Forge to cease, am I correct in that? One wouldn't say for instance" Boy, it's sure nice being alive in the 21st century!Way better that when I was alive in the 1700s!

Okay - I get it now.  You're saying that because we are now delivered from the delusion, we shouldn't be saying "when I was a Christian.....".  Rather, we should be saying "when I believed I was a Christian....".

Fair enough.  A little bit po-TAY-to, po-TAH-to, but fair enough.

Now that's out the way, how about answering my other questions?  They still apply to people who currently profess themselves to be Christian, regardless of how ex-believers should describe themselves.
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
Why is it so hard for believers to answer a direct question?

Offline jynnan tonnix

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #124 on: December 05, 2011, 08:48:57 AM »
Just to emphasize that I would also be really interested in your reply to Anfauglir's question, OS. He's layed it out very clearly and eloquently here:

Quote
I put it to YOU, Onesteward, that YOU have not been really saved - you just think you have, and deluded yourself in exactly the same way that Velkyn and others did.  The only difference between you and them is that you have not yet realised it is a delusion.

Of course, the simple counter to this that would collapse my argument is for you to present - as repeatedly requested - some test, or sign, that could be applied to someone professing to have been saved, to determine whether they actually HAD received this gift from god, or if they were just deluded into thinking they had received such a gift.  And I look forward to you explaining how we do that.

Unfortunately, until then.....the only two groups we have are these:
1) The people who KNOW they were deluded in the past (Velkyn et al), and
2) The people who may or may not be deluded at this point in time.
If group 2 are unable to prove they are NOT deluded, and you are agreeing with us that the people in group 1 who used to be in group 2 were all deluded.....I'm afraid there is only one reasonable conclusion about the state of the people in that second group.....

 I am most interested in how you, or any Christian, can somehow convince us that what you have is "true and forever" Christianity vs. the kind (which felt every bit as "true and forever" at the time) which was experienced by those who eventually concluded that it had been a delusion.

Offline velkyn

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #125 on: December 05, 2011, 11:09:44 AM »
Ok maybe I can clarify my position here.

Whether it is Velkyn, Dan Barker or Gonegolfing as long as you claim to have been really Christians , Velkyn as a "Presby" , Barker and GG as Pentecostals then I believe you have to stop claiming to be atheists.

What makes a person a "Christian" in the Presbyterian Church?  This is what they say:
Presbyterian Doctrine:
"Justification by Grace through Faith - Our salvation (justification) through Jesus is God's generous gift to us and not the result of our own accomplishments."
To me it seems that if you insist there is no God you wouldn't be able to get a " generous gift " from Him.The way I read it  : no gift= no salvation.
Wow, OS, you are indeed a sad case.  Again, you seem to be unable to accept that I did believe once and not now.  It *is* cute to see you repeatedly ignoring this. It does make you like like an utter idiot.

Quote
Assemblies of God? From their site:The ABC's of salvation...
Become a child of God by receiving Christ."To all who receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God." John 1:12 (See Revelation 3:20.)
 Confess that Jesus is your Lord. "If you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord,' and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved." Romans 10:9 (See verse 10.)
 Again, here it would appear that if you don't believe there are any Deities you would exempt youself from being "saved" under those doctrines.
In either case I could see a person being one or the other....but not both.
and lovely example of how Christians can’t agree. Thanks for that, shows you all to be spewing nonsense with no evidence that any of you have some hotline to the divine.
Quote
I'm also not making any claims to whether or not any of them were ever Christians or not.If I had a gun to my head right now and had to choose correctly or else, I would say all three were Christians at one point.Which is why I think that them calling themselves 'atheists' now doesn't add up.

What a pathetic liar.  How nice to see you try to avoid responsibility in this written medium.  I just have to laugh.  I mean, assuming you do believe in your god, do you think he doesn’t see the written words I can?   Let’s look at the claims you’ve made:
Quote
If yours was not real why are you so adamant in claiming  that you used to be either a christian or a theist?If you really believed you had an encounter with The Holy Spirit who would have 'quickened' you....gave you Spiritual life ( born again) then you are a backslider, granted a very pissed off one, but one none-the-less .But you have to deny that experience, which you now finally seem to do,( "nothing real" ) in order to embrace atheism.If you are an atheist then of course you believe there was no God or Holy Spirit to do anything and you begin to make more sense.Why don't you just drop the bone Velkyn and deny the possibility of you ever being Christian?

Quote
As you agreed to about your own conversion experience -being "born again"; like you claimed to be, is a sovereign act of The Holy Spirit.Surely you must remember your own experience  even after being backslidden for a while.


Claim after claim that I wasn’t really a Christian.  Tsk.  and I find it hilarious, again, that you are so desperate to deny that I’m an atheist since I have lost, see, OS, LOST, my belief.  I do feel sorry for you, in that your faith must be so weak that someone saying that they dont’ agree with you makes you lie so badly.  Can’t even make up your mind what someone else “should” be to satisfy your nonsense.

I do wonder, OS, did Mr. Barker say what you expected?  It’s cute to see you fishing for something and then getting exactly what I said he would be likely to say.   
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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #126 on: December 05, 2011, 03:32:46 PM »
That is my point nogodsforme, you can't.Your 'non-belief' would have to be "retroactive' wouldn't it? You say there was never a God or Jesus as savior.How then does an atheist proclaim that they "used to be" Christian? The very essense of what a Christian is according to atheists never existed.

Uh, what? No...

   Christian vs atheist is a distinction based on the state of belief at the time in question. To say one used to be a Christian and is now an atheist means that the person once believed in the Christian teachings/God/Jesus/etc. - to later state that you were incorrect in your belief only means you stopped being a Christian. It in no way can say that you never were a Christian.

   Thus being "Saved" is like signing for a package delivery with the promise you'll get it later - but it doesn't show up. If you question the situation and come to the conclusion that you are not going to actually recieving the package, that doesn't mean you didn't previously think you would, but that you no longer think you will. There never was a package, but you still thought there was. Same thing. Velkyn and the others state that they now do not believe God has ever existed, but they once believed he did. Therefore they were once Christians.

   Now here comes the "No True Scotsman" fallacy... because the question comes if they were "True ChristiansTM" based off of whether they were actually connected with God or not. There are two options[1]:
1. They were connected with God (and therefore, you believe, cannot have become "unconnected" - if I understand what you're saying in this thread).
2. They were deluded into thinking they were connected with God, but were not actually connected with God.

   The problem is that you have no way of telling which is which. Since they are indistinguishable, it is possible that everyone fits into category 2[2] and thus you are deluded in thinking you are connected with God. So you will be asked again:

How can we verify whether or not someone who actually believes is deluded in thinking they are connected with God?
 1. A minor false dichotomy as there are others, but most all of them feed into option 2.
 2. Which Occam's Razor favors for reasons beyond the scope of this thread.
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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #127 on: December 05, 2011, 04:27:02 PM »
I think we have stumbled into the semantic black hole of mystical thinking. (I think time travel language a la Hitchhiker's guide to the Galaxy must be involved here.) Okay.

When I (thought that I) was a Christian, I sincerely (thought that I) believed in god and Jesus and so on. I prayed (thinking that it was) for real. I did not know at that time that at some point in the future I would change my mind and stop believing. I did not think, okay I'll fake being a Christian for a few years and see how I like it.

I was not (thinking I was) a Hindu or Muslim. I was not (thinking I was) an atheist. I was not (thinking I was) a Rastafarian or a Scientologist. I was (thinking I was) a Christian.

If onesteward had known me then, would onesteward have known that I was only "thinking of myself" as a Christian and not really being a bona fide Christian? When I attended church and went to the college Christian club, did anybody point at me and scream like Donald Sutherland in Body Snatchers? No. Nowadays when I go to a church service or other religious  event, nobody points me out either.

Like many folks here, I have had the experience of having people argue with me that I could not be an atheist because I am nice, I am a good mom, I am kind to people in trouble, I adore babies and puppies, I take care of my husband's elderly mom, I help people in other countries, etc. People who know me can't imagine me going to hell, so they pretend that I am secretly a Christian. Makes them feel better, I guess.[1] Only when we get down to brass tacks in these kinds of debates do I hear that I am going to hell regardless.

I wonder if that is what onesteward really has the most trouble with. Your pastor or wife or best Christian buddy or favorite televangelist or beloved gospel singer or Christian author could actually be an unbeliever who is just faking it. Who once had the faith but does no longer. Who does not know how to let you know the truth. And furthermore, onesteward, here is the scariest part: you will never know at what point they stopped believing because you cannot tell! Which means that it could also happen to you.....
 1. My Muslim students try to convince me that I must secretly be a Muslim for the same reasons.
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline onesteward

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #128 on: December 05, 2011, 04:43:52 PM »
Wow, OS, you are indeed a sad case.  Again, you seem to be unable to accept that I did believe once and not now.  It *is* cute to see you repeatedly ignoring this. It does make you like like an utter idiot.

 Then when you 'believed' as a Presbyterian would this characterize your experience?

Presbyterian Doctrine:
"Justification by Grace through Faith - Our salvation (justification) through Jesus is God's generous gift to us and not the result of our own accomplishments."

Our salvation..is God's gift. However,You maintain that :
 { No God = no salvation} isn't a logical conclusion?
 That- when we believe - a sovereign act of God saves us,seems to be one of the plainest and most agreed upon doctrines in Christendom.God Himself interacts with us to make us Christians.



What a pathetic liar.  How nice to see you try to avoid responsibility in this written medium.  I just have to laugh.  I mean, assuming you do believe in your god, do you think he doesn’t see the written words I can?

Of course  He can.The motive behind them as well.


  Let’s look at the claims you’ve made:
 If yours was not real why are you so adamant in claiming  that you used to be either a christian or a theist?If you really believed you had an encounter with The Holy Spirit who would have 'quickened' you....gave you Spiritual life ( born again) then you are a backslider, granted a very pissed off one, but one none-the-less .But you have to deny that experience, which you now finally seem to do,( "nothing real" ) in order to embrace atheism.If you are an atheist then of course you believe there was no God or Holy Spirit to do anything and you begin to make more sense.Why don't you just drop the bone Velkyn and deny the possibility of you ever being Christian?

If you maintain that you are atheist it just seems logical you couldn't have been Christian.God Himself makes Christians.It is a sovereign act..as Jesus said   : 5) Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit. 6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit  gives birth to spirit. This explains this previous quote to Nicodemus: 3) Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.When you are "Spirit" born = born again = being a Christian.


Claim after claim that I wasn’t really a Christian.
Only that you can't logically be both, Velkyn.


 Tsk.  and I find it hilarious, again, that you are so desperate to deny that I’m an atheist since I have lost, see, OS, LOST, my belief.

LEFT I think is a better term.Then like the 'Prodigal" you know the way back. "Lost" seems like you don't know what happened to it.That is if "your belief" made you a Christian. 



 I do feel sorry for you, in that your faith must be so weak that someone saying that they dont’ agree with you makes you lie so badly.  Can’t even make up your mind what someone else “should” be to satisfy your nonsense.
Really not following here .
 

I do wonder, OS, did Mr. Barker say what you expected?  It’s cute to see you fishing for something and then getting exactly what I said he would be likely to say.

 Pretty much what I expected although I figured a stonger refutation of the miracle and healing stories. When he insists on having been a "True Believer" do you think he would say he was 'born again'?I would expect as much from a Pentecostal preacher , don't you?
When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
when sorrows like sea billows roll;
what ever my lot, you have taught me to say
it is well, it is well with my soul.

Horatio Spafford

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #129 on: December 05, 2011, 10:54:10 PM »

If you maintain that you are atheist it just seems logical you couldn't have been Christian.God Himself makes Christians


I explained why you can't use this argument in the Err2 post, Dr Mobius.

Quote
LEFT I think is a better term.Then like the 'Prodigal" you know the way back. "Lost" seems like you don't know what happened to it.That is if "your belief" made you a Christian. 

By Dr Mobius logic, when she is an atheist, God does not exist, so she can't possibly become a Christian again.

God seems to poof into existence when you become Christian, and poof out of existence when you become an atheist. This explains how people can become Muslims. Each person has their own virtual poof-God.

Humans, in general, don't waste any opportunity to be unfathomably stupid - Dr Cynical.

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #130 on: December 06, 2011, 08:39:21 AM »
If you maintain that you are atheist it just seems logical you couldn't have been Christian.God Himself makes Christians.

Okay.  So Velkyn was never a "made by Yahweh" Christian, just a "deluded into thinking she was a made by Yahweh" Christian.  Or, alternateively, that if she REALLY had been a "made by Yahweh" Christian, she can't really say she is an "atheist" now.

<Shrugs>  You know, its fine with me.  A semantic difference, I suspect.

What really interests me - and, for some reason, what appears NOT to interest YOU - is how one tells at the time, whether one is truly a "made by Yahweh" Christian or not? 

Why is your interest in the matter solely concerned with making sure that those who were never really Christians don't describe themselves as such? 

Why does it matter what the "not nows" call themselves, when for all you know 99% of the people in your church AREN'T "made by Yahweh" Christians, but simply deluded into thinking they are?

And why does it matter what the "not nows" call themselves, when YOU YOURSELF have no way of knowing whether you are really a "made by Yahweh" Christians....or if tomorrow you will wake to discover that - just like Velkyn - YOU were never really a Christian either?  Is that what all this semantic dance is about?  Because you suspect you aren't a real Christian, and what to know how to refer to yourself when you finally summon up the courage to "come out"?
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
Why is it so hard for believers to answer a direct question?

Offline kaziglu bey

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #131 on: December 06, 2011, 09:18:34 AM »

If you maintain that you are atheist it just seems logical you couldn't have been Christian.God Himself makes Christians.It is a sovereign act..as Jesus said   : 5) Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit. 6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit  gives birth to spirit. This explains this previous quote to Nicodemus: 3) Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.When you are "Spirit" born = born again = being a Christian.

LEFT, I think is a better term.Then like the 'Prodigal" you know the way back. "Lost" seems like you don't know what happened to it.That is if "your belief" made you a Christian. 


Those phrases in bold are highlighted by me. I removed original bold/italics for clarity of presentation.

How can one know the way back if it is entirely a sovereign act of God that someone is believer to begin with? How can God eternally punish non believers, when it is due to a lack of action by God that they do not believe?
Seriously though... What would happen if the Great Green Arkleseizure didn't fram up the rammastam before the hermite curve achieved maximum nurdfurdle velocity? Now THAT would be something. AmIrite?

Offline velkyn

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #132 on: December 06, 2011, 11:06:07 AM »
My, my OS, nice of you to try to ask the same questions again and again in your desperate hope that I’ll somehow answer differently.  Poor thing, this is all you have?  Darn.

I’ve answered you before, OS.  I believed this.  Yep, believed just like you believe that you are a Christian right now.  My friends here have ably shown how your idiocy is again evident.  I believed in god so yep, I believed in grace.  That clear enough for you now?  But, please do try to ask it again.
Our salvation..is God's gift. However,You maintain that :
 { No God = no salvation} isn't a logical conclusion?
 That- when we believe - a sovereign act of God saves us,seems to be one of the plainest and most agreed upon doctrines in Christendom.God Himself interacts with us to make us Christians.
  I do love how you keep insisting that your god is real and have yet shown that to be true.  How your sentence should read is “That- when we believe - a sovereign act of God is believed to saves us, seems to be one of the plainest and most agreed upon doctrines in Christendom.God Himself interacts with us to make us Christians.’[/quote] It’s also not universally agreed upon, that when we believe *then* God interacts with us to make us Christians.  The concept of grace as presented in Romans 9 makes the assumption that one is given grace first and then you can believe. Same with when JC says that there are some already intended to not be able to believe at all.
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Of course  He can.The motive behind them as well.
so lying is okay with god, as long as it’s for him? Oh that’s lovely.  I suggest you read Romans 3 to see how claiming that since your motive is “pure” then you can lie doesn’t work with your god.  I’ll save you a seat in hell, OS.:D   
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If you maintain that you are atheist it just seems logical you couldn't have been Christian.
  No, not logical at all, just the usual desperation of a Christian who doesn’t want to admit that his god is imaginary and doesn’t do what he claims it does.  OS, you are attempting to claim that no one who was a Christian could ever lose their faith and decide that this god never existed in the first place. You have no evidence of this god at all, no more than a Muslim has of Allah or a Hindu has of Krishna.  I used to belive that magic worked and that Santa Claus was real, very deeply and passionately (nearly broke my neck with my complete belief that I could fly if I believed hard enough), and now I don’t believe in those thing at all.  I’m an a-magicist and an a-Santaist. I’m also an atheist.   
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God Himself makes Christians.It is a sovereign act..as Jesus said   : 5) Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit. 6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit  gives birth to spirit. This explains this previous quote to Nicodemus: 3) Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.When you are "Spirit" born = born again = being a Christian.
   No, you think God makes Christians as a sovereign act per a flawed book.  Repeating baseless claims makes them no more true, OS.  Show your god exists and we can proceed from there.  You can also add to JC’s claims that, again, only some people are allowed to be “born again”, just to clear things up and make sure everyone knows just how confusing your bible really is if you actually read it.
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Only that you can't logically be both, Velkyn.
To quote Inigo Montoya “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”  Repeating the word “logical” doesn’t make you any more logical, OS.  I can easily be both once a Christian and now an atheist.  I can have believed, *really* believed that I was given God’s grace and believed in God himself, and I can have lost my faith in the light of evidence that this god doesn’t exist at all.  Your “logic” depends on if you can prove that your god exists *and* does as you say. Can you?  Or are we again left with you believe in God and you believe in what you say but we have no evidence of either. 
Tsk.  and I find it hilarious, again, that you are so desperate to deny that I’m an atheist since I have lost, see, OS, LOST, my belief.
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LEFT I think is a better term.Then like the 'Prodigal" you know the way back. "Lost" seems like you don't know what happened to it.That is if "your belief" made you a Christian. 
Hilarious, I know what happened to it, I lost it in the light of reason. It up and vanished since it was composed of nothing, like a shadow in the noon day sun and since there is no evidence that the god that you claim was responsible for it  in this last 2000+ years, it does seem that this belief was honestly held but not supported at all.   

Gee, shall I use a better word like I threw it away like the garbage it is? I grew up and didn’t need some magical man to love me and pet me and call me George?  My faith disappeared in a puff of reason and evidence?  How does that sound?  Oh and please do play word games with this, it’s so cute watching a Christian desperately trying to cling to any lie they have created about someone else in their minds and trying to twist words since their excuses have failed so badly. And again, we have OS being psyhic since he questions that my belief made me a Christain. &) 
I do feel sorry for you, in that your faith must be so weak that someone saying that they dont’ agree with you makes you lie so badly.  Can’t even make up your mind what someone else “should” be to satisfy your nonsense.
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Really not following here .
No kidding.  You can’t seem to accept that someone has realized that your god isn’t real and that you must constantly lie about their motives, their beliefs etc. You seem unable to admit that I was just as good a Christian as you but realized the basis for that belief wasn’t there.  You seem to need to tell yourself that you are right no matter what, despite all evidence to the contrary.  You seem to need external validation even if you have to force it on others, long after they say your claims are wrong about them.  If velkyn could look at her faith and realize it’s based on something false, then anyone could and this makes you simply wrong.  Humans don’t like to be wrong, it makes us defensive and angry, often making us do stupid things like lie (no matter how “pure” our motive).  I sure didn’t’ like to be wrong when I realized that there was no evidence for the Christian god or any god, but my feelings don’t much matter in the harsh light of facts.  I got over it and went on with my life. 

So, please do tell us the difference between you and me when we were both Christians. Show me how we factually differed. Show me this god of yours.
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Pretty much what I expected although I figured a stonger refutation of the miracle and healing stories. When he insists on having been a "True Believer" do you think he would say he was 'born again'?I would expect as much from a Pentecostal preacher , don't you?

How stronger than saying this by Dan
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I also explain in Losing Faith in Faith and in Godless about a few times when I prayed for someone who was healed . . . but I now do not consider them to be supernatural healings. I now consider them to be either lucky coincidences (they were going to get better anyway), or psychosomatic  improvements, or misunderstandings, or temporary "I feel better" claims. In any event, those experiences were very rare . . . probably 99% of the prayers I made were NOT followed by a positive outcome . . . and what happens is the understood psychological phenomenon of "confirmation bias," where we eagerly count all the HITS and ignore all the MISSES. If we counted ALL the results, prayer would be seen as a dismal failure.
can one get?  Please do provide examples.   

And I’m sure he would have claimed to be born again, since as you say, Pentacostals say such things.  And you’d try all of your usual nonsense trying to claim that he “really wasn’t” which would fail against him as it would me.  Now, show me again how you can prove you are “born again” and I wasn’t.  Answer Anfauglir’s questions on how you know and can prove it.  You claim he doesn’t “understand” but you of course fail to address his points. 


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Offline onesteward

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #133 on: December 06, 2011, 07:13:50 PM »
My, my OS, nice of you to try to ask the same questions again and again in your desperate hope that I’ll somehow answer differently.  Poor thing, this is all you have?  Darn.

it's all I want to know.

I’ve answered you before, OS.  I believed this.  Yep, believed just like you believe that you are a Christian right now.  My friends here have ably shown how your idiocy is again evident.  I believed in god so yep, I believed in grace.  That clear enough for you now?  But, please do try to ask it again.
OK, I will.So now, as a rational atheist, you realize the whole thing for you had to be a delusion.
Your claim to Christianity is basically assinine in light of your new found (subsequent) enlightenment.

 

I do love how you keep insisting that your god is real and have yet shown that to be true.  How your sentence should read is “That- when we believe - a sovereign act of God is believed to saves us, seems to be one of the plainest and most agreed upon doctrines in Christendom.God Himself interacts with us to make us Christians.’
The fact of the matter is : in order to claim to be a Christian  you, me, or anyone would have to have a belief in God...no?That is what I'm saying.

It’s also not universally agreed upon, that when we believe *then* God interacts with us to make us Christians.  The concept of grace as presented in Romans 9 makes the assumption that one is given grace first and then you can believe.
And when you do then believe.....back to Christianity 101.I do realize that Jesus said :The Father" draws us to Him.

 Same with when JC says that there are some already intended to not be able to believe at all.
Not familiar with that ...also in RO: 9?

so lying is okay with god, as long as it’s for him? Oh that’s lovely.  I suggest you read Romans 3 to see how claiming that since your motive is “pure” then you can lie doesn’t work with your god.
Never made that claim.

 I’ll save you a seat in hell, OS.:D

You'll have a long wait, Velkyn...forever as a matter of fact.Maybe that will be your hell...eternity waiting for me to show up to give me a piece of your mind.Oh, the irony!.
 
 
 No, not logical at all, just the usual desperation of a Christian who doesn’t want to admit that his god is imaginary and doesn’t do what he claims it does.  OS, you are attempting to claim that no one who was a Christian could ever lose their faith and decide that this god never existed in the first place.
I think you can leave the faith if you were saved.If you claim to be an atheist you are saying you weren't really Christian.When I left the Faith I still new God existed and had saved me.I was pissed and was happy to let Him know about it.I always saw atheists as Wussies...anyone can say God doesn't exist- it takes some nads to shake your fist in His face!Call Him out as it were.

I used to belive that magic worked and that Santa Claus was real, very deeply and passionately (nearly broke my neck with my complete belief that I could fly if I believed hard enough), and now I don’t believe in those thing at all.  I’m an a-magicist and an a-Santaist. I’m also an atheist.
 

 good enough.You never used to be able to fly, you never really got presents from Santa, and you never were actually born again.I think that's a wrap.
 


 To quote Inigo Montoya “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”  Repeating the word “logical” doesn’t make you any more logical, OS.
  I can easily be both once a Christian and now an atheist.
Inconceivable!


 I can have believed, *really* believed that I was given God’s grace and believed in God himself, and I can have lost my faith in the light of evidence that this god doesn’t exist at all.  Your “logic” depends on if you can prove that your god exists *and* does as you say. Can you?  Or are we again left with you believe in God and you believe in what you say but we have no evidence of either.
Exactly...I'm a Christian. You are an atheist.Why am I Christian? I was born anew by God.Spiritually dead and now alive.Simple.How can you be both? God - who doesn't exist--gave me new life through His Holy Spirit- who also doesn't exist...etc.I know you think I'm delusional but ,man. 
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when sorrows like sea billows roll;
what ever my lot, you have taught me to say
it is well, it is well with my soul.

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Offline Brakeman

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #134 on: December 06, 2011, 08:04:02 PM »
I was born anew by God.Spiritually dead and now alive.
So now that you are spiritually alive, can you converse with god? What has god said to you so far?
Have you prophesied yet? What does God sound like?
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Offline jdawg70

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #135 on: December 06, 2011, 08:10:04 PM »

I do love how you keep insisting that your god is real and have yet shown that to be true.  How your sentence should read is “That- when we believe - a sovereign act of God is believed to saves us, seems to be one of the plainest and most agreed upon doctrines in Christendom.God Himself interacts with us to make us Christians.’
The fact of the matter is : in order to claim to be a Christian  you, me, or anyone would have to have a belief in God...no?That is what I'm saying.


<unlurk>
...and Velkyn *had* a belief in god.  She no longer does.  Ergo, she *was* a Christian.  She no longer *is*.  I think some people on this forum are waiting for you to acknowledge that as true so that everyone can make sure that we're all on the same semantic page for a continued discussion.
</unlurk>

I think you can leave the faith if you were saved.If you claim to be an atheist you are saying you weren't really Christian.When I left the Faith I still new God existed and had saved me.I was pissed and was happy to let Him know about it.I always saw atheists as Wussies...anyone can say God doesn't exist- it takes some nads to shake your fist in His face!Call Him out as it were.

<reunlurk>
...but based on this I don't know if you do agree that my above statement is correct.  If so, please acknowledge.  If not, please explain why.
</reunlurk>
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Offline jdawg70

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #136 on: December 06, 2011, 08:21:23 PM »
That is my point nogodsforme, you can't.Your 'non-belief' would have to be "retroactive' wouldn't it? You say there was never a God or Jesus as savior.How then does an atheist proclaim that they "used to be" Christian? The very essense of what a Christian is according to atheists never existed.

Uh, what? No...

   Christian vs atheist is a distinction based on the state of belief at the time in question. To say one used to be a Christian and is now an atheist means that the person once believed in the Christian teachings/God/Jesus/etc. - to later state that you were incorrect in your belief only means you stopped being a Christian. It in no way can say that you never were a Christian.

   Thus being "Saved" is like signing for a package delivery with the promise you'll get it later - but it doesn't show up. If you question the situation and come to the conclusion that you are not going to actually recieving the package, that doesn't mean you didn't previously think you would, but that you no longer think you will. There never was a package, but you still thought there was. Same thing. Velkyn and the others state that they now do not believe God has ever existed, but they once believed he did. Therefore they were once Christians.

   Now here comes the "No True Scotsman" fallacy... because the question comes if they were "True ChristiansTM" based off of whether they were actually connected with God or not. There are two options[1]:
1. They were connected with God (and therefore, you believe, cannot have become "unconnected" - if I understand what you're saying in this thread).
2. They were deluded into thinking they were connected with God, but were not actually connected with God.

   The problem is that you have no way of telling which is which. Since they are indistinguishable, it is possible that everyone fits into category 2[2] and thus you are deluded in thinking you are connected with God. So you will be asked again:

How can we verify whether or not someone who actually believes is deluded in thinking they are connected with God?
 1. A minor false dichotomy as there are others, but most all of them feed into option 2.
 2. Which Occam's Razor favors for reasons beyond the scope of this thread.

Oh, and onesteward, don't miss this post from Avatar of Belial - I think there are some points in the above that need to be addressed.
"When we landed on the moon, that was the point where god should have come up and said 'hello'. Because if you invent some creatures, put them on the blue one and they make it to the grey one, you f**king turn up and say 'well done'."
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Offline Alzael

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #137 on: December 06, 2011, 08:35:21 PM »
Exactly...I'm a Christian. You are an atheist.Why am I Christian? I was born anew by God.Spiritually dead and now alive.Simple.How can you be both? God - who doesn't exist--gave me new life through His Holy Spirit- who also doesn't exist...etc.I know you think I'm delusional but ,man.

Well, for all intents and purposes aren't you?

I mean if you can't prove anything that you're saying, but believe god exists anyways. Not to mention if you can't provide a way to tell the difference between someone that truly believes and someone who only thinks that they truly believe, but declare that you truly believe. What exactly is there that separates you from a delusional person?

You can say that you're a true believer and that god has done all of these things to you, but for all you actually know you could easily just be suffering from a severe psychosis. How would you actually know the difference?

I always saw atheists as Wussies...anyone can say God doesn't exist- it takes some nads to shake your fist in His face!Call Him out as it were.

Only if he does, in fact, exist. If he doesn't exist, which is infinitely more likely, then it's just the act of a lunatic mentally masterbating himself.

The fact of the matter is : in order to claim to be a Christian  you, me, or anyone would have to have a belief in God...no?That is what I'm saying.

And she did have a belief in god. So, by this admission, she [/b]was[/b] a Christian. She simply stopped being one when she stopped believing.

OK, I will.So now, as a rational atheist, you realize the whole thing for you had to be a delusion.
Your claim to Christianity is basically assinine in light of your new found (subsequent) enlightenment.

This doesn't mean she was not a "true" Christian. Unless you can demonstrate how your own beliefs are different or distinguishable from a delusion. After all, all of these criteria that you're using to judge her former Christianness could just be figments of your own imagination.

You see Steward, before you can play One True Christian, you first have to demonstrate that there is such a thing as a True Christian. If you can't provide an objevtive set of criteria that would allow one to determine the difference (and justify why those criteria should apply) then all of this is nothing more than arrogant posturing on your part. Saying Velkyn was never a Christian is a lie because you can't even prove what that would entail outside of the set of criteria that you've personally decided on.
 
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Offline Ambivalent

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #138 on: December 06, 2011, 09:06:59 PM »
I'm glad this post came up because I was actually thinking about this exact topic the other day! The thought began when a  Christian friend was telling me how his girlfriend supposedly went from being an "atheist" to "theist" and magically "found Jesus".

I pondered, "Once you go atheist, is it possible to go back?"

As I find myself drawn towards atheism, I find religion in general to be less credible. I can't keep making excuses for a completely invisible God. I tried when I still wanted to hang onto religion but my mind simply wouldn't allow it. I comprehend that my desire for a God surrounded me wishing for an afterlife - an eternal life. But wanting something doesn't make it true, regardless of how much I want it.

My rational mind cannot grasp it anymore. The arguments or answers Christian supply do not provide me any evidence. I would like some.

"But look all around you!" Some say. "The glory and evidence in God is all around you -- it's in the people beside you, the air you breathe, it's in the grass, it's in the sky, it's represented in all the Earth, in the gifts He gave to you."

But this could also be evidence of a seemingly random reaction. It's entirely possible although rare that Earth was able to support and host us.

I want something to satisfy my senses, the senses God apparently gave to me. Why can't I physically see Him? Why can't I feel him? Are the feelings I am supposedly feel God, or simply my mind? And why is it wrong for me to not believe if my sense can't confirm anything? Why should I be punished for it?

Most importantly: Why does one have to experience an entirely life altering event to know that He is there? What about all of the millions of other people who didn't have him there? Those thousands who died of starvation, those thousands with cancer?

And even if God had assisted you, you'd have to ask; "Why specifically me? Why am I so special when others aren't? God chooses favourites?" Which makes me feel somewhat unsettled.

Of course we all know these questions can easily be answered with a simple; "There is no God." But that answer doesn't please other people, those desperate to cling to a notion that we aren't going to simply die off, that there's no reward for life, that there's no giant Sky Daddy watching over us and protecting us.

I can't imagine how anyone could not consider those questions. I can't imagine how one who reads the Bible can skip certain phrases, or distort them, or read them without asking questions. In my mind, to go backwards means positively no sense. It's like someone who stopped believing in Santa Claus suddenly does.

I also could have went into a lot of details here, but this website in general poses plenty of decent questions to ask and you all probably comprehend it.

But basically I believe that an atheist who goes backwards was never an atheist at all.

Offline fishjie

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #139 on: December 06, 2011, 09:13:06 PM »

Exactly...I'm a Christian. You are an atheist.Why am I Christian? I was born anew by God.Spiritually dead and now alive.Simple.How can you be both? God - who doesn't exist--gave me new life through His Holy Spirit- who also doesn't exist...etc.I know you think I'm delusional but ,man.

Bzzt wrong, you just *think* you're a christian.    That's the point everyone is trying to make.     Until you come up with a good way of testing whether or not someone is a "true" christian, you're just playing a dumb semantics game.     

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #140 on: December 07, 2011, 08:20:02 AM »
Exactly...I'm a Christian. ..... Why am I Christian? I was born anew by God.Spiritually dead and now alive.Simple.

Fine.

Prove it.

Show that you are in any way different now, to how Velkyn was.
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
Why is it so hard for believers to answer a direct question?

Offline jaimehlers

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #141 on: December 07, 2011, 10:21:32 AM »
onesteward's argument about how velkyn was never really a Christian because she's not now a Christian strikes me as being the same as saying that someone who's dead was never really alive in the first place.  Or was never really a vegetarian because she now eats meat, if you want a less permanent example.  It's patently ridiculous logic, in other words, because it assumes that someone's current state disallows previous states that contradict the current state.

I believe it is immensely more accurate to describe religious belief as a habit.  People don't start with it, they build it up as they practice it, until they develop the habit to a sufficient level that it becomes unconscious to practice it.  That means you can have nonreligious people pick up the habit of religious belief, and you can also have formerly-religious people who broke the habit out of disgust, or whatever reason they had.  But current religious believers can't legitimately claim that former religious believers[1] were never believers in their particular religion simply because they aren't now, because that claim is based on the idea that they can't have stopped believing if they really truly believed in the first place.

The simple truth of the matter is that belief, being a habit, is something that you can change, or stop doing entirely, if you put your mind to it.  And no amount of quibble by religious believers can make that untrue.
 1. whether they convert to another religion or simply become atheists

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #142 on: December 07, 2011, 10:25:09 AM »
I believe it is immensely more accurate to describe religious belief as a habit.  People don't start with it, they build it up as they practice it, until they develop the habit to a sufficient level that it becomes unconscious to practice it.

Unless by "religious belief" you mean "religious practices", your argument is utterly wrong. You cannot simply believe in something or stop believing in something through sheer force of will.
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Offline velkyn

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #143 on: December 07, 2011, 10:57:42 AM »
OS,
You’ve been told repeatedly that I was a Christian and now I am not.  One does not preclude the other. The only thing that happens is that I have no reason to worship this religion/god now since there is no evidence to support it.

You have repeatedly tried to say I was not a Christian, even after my statements explaining things and you have yet to show how you know who is really a Christian. 
OK, I will.So now, as a rational atheist, you realize the whole thing for you had to be a delusion.
Your claim to Christianity is basically assinine in light of your new found (subsequent) enlightenment.
  Wow, nice strawman.  Pity that’s all you have any more. No, OS, as a rational atheist, I realized that there is no way for a Christian to demonstrate that his belief was any different than mine.  Repeating again, for the desperate Christian, I totally believed that I was born again. You have provide an excellent example of this belief with no actual evidence with your continued inability to show that you are any more Christian than I was.  Thank you for that. 
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And when you do then believe.....back to Christianity 101.I do realize that Jesus said :The Father" draws us to Him.
Yes, and we have plenty of other ways one is supposedly “saved”. Works, childbirth, grace, belief, all claimed by various authors.  Even JC can’t decide on what “really” works.  We have this mission creep that occurs since everyone wants a different audience to be a potential convert. Doesn’t work so hot if your way to be saved doesn’t work for you.  Your claims that Christianity is some monolith religion with consistent beliefs are just so easy to shoot down. 
Same with when JC says that there are some already intended to not be able to believe at all.
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Not familiar with that ...also in RO: 9?
Why no, since JC doesn’t speak there, don’t you know that?  &)  I do love how ignorant Chrisitans are of their own bible. So convenient for them.  I do wonder how they know if they are getting it right and will be saved with this evidently willful ignorance. I’ve listed these before but one more time for the desperate. Matthew 13.  Mark 4. Luke 8.  I’ve just cited the chapters so you can get all of the context you need.
 
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Never made that claim.
  You wrote this “Of course  He can.The motive behind them as well.”  Certainly seems that you are acknowledging that your words aren’t all they are cracked up to be if there is a “motive” behind them. But granted, you didn’t say you were lying.  That’s easy enough to see on its own, even here in this post.
 
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You'll have a long wait, Velkyn...forever as a matter of fact.Maybe that will be your hell...eternity waiting for me to show up to give me a piece of your mind.Oh, the irony!.
Nah, being that hell doesn’t exist and is a sadistic fantasy by little men who couldn’t stand anyone telling them that they were wrong.
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I think you can leave the faith if you were saved.If you claim to be an atheist you are saying you weren't really Christian.When I left the Faith I still new God existed and had saved me.I was pissed and was happy to let Him know about it.I always saw atheists as Wussies...anyone can say God doesn't exist- it takes some nads to shake your fist in His face!Call Him out as it were.
What, no rebuttal on how “logical” you are when I’ve shown you not to be.  Tsk.  Nope, dear, I can easily say I’m an atheist now and a Christian then.  A Christian believes in JC right?  I now don’t, so by simple definitions alone, I’m an atheist.   

Oooooh, and when “you left the faith” you somehow “knew” that God still existed.  So, show me this evidence, OS.  Surely you can if it’s so easy to know.  But I’m guessing that you can’t and this is just more nonsense spewed without you thinking very hard.  It’s so pathetic that you’ve now gone to the “angry atheist” lie that so many Christians love to spread.  Sorry, no not angry at something that has no evidence it exists.  By your claim, I should be angry at Santa too.  Not that either.  And I’ve humbly prayed to his god for help regaining my faith.  Got nothing.  Bummer for you and your ridiculous claims.  And I love you trying to call me a wussie.  How cute and I do love how your reasoning makes your god even less godlike.  He certainly seemed to take offence at anyone dissing him in your magic myths.  Can’t he do that anymore?  Shucks.  You want me to call your god out?  I have, but I’ll do it again just for you.  God of Chrisitanity, it’s time you got off your ass and did something for those who worship you as you did in your supposedly “divinely inspired” book.  First and foremost, you need to get a better quality of Christian if OS is all you have.  The fail here is enormous and he and his ilk like Lance and BibleStudent really give you a bad name. You killed many many people for doing that, so either you like idiots or you don’t exist.  For an all-loving all-good god like your followers claim, you sure go out of your way to be anything but. I’m more than pleased to have a altar contest that you used to like with anyone you want.  I’ll use a zippo or even only a magnifying glass on a sunny day and your guy can just call on you.  Deal?  If you succeed, think of all of the great worshppers you’ll get, just like you were fishing for when you had JC supposedly doing all of those miracles to establish your bona fides.

So, OS, do you think he’ll answer?  What will be your excuse this time? 
I used to belive that magic worked and that Santa Claus was real, very deeply and passionately (nearly broke my neck with my complete belief that I could fly if I believed hard enough), and now I don’t believe in those thing at all.  I’m an a-magicist and an a-Santaist. I’m also an atheist.
 
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good enough.You never used to be able to fly, you never really got presents from Santa, and you never were actually born again.I think that's a wrap.
A lie and a dodge! Aw, can’t actually answer, just a pathetic attempt to ignore my points and lie again about how you think I wasn’t born again.  That just deserves to be in bold.  Nice one, OS!  Gee, is your motive pure for this lie too? &) 
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Exactly...I'm a Christian. You are an atheist.Why am I Christian? I was born anew by God.Spiritually dead and now alive.Simple.How can you be both? God - who doesn't exist--gave me new life through His Holy Spirit- who also doesn't exist...etc.I know you think I'm delusional but ,man.

Gee so was I and you can’t show anything but circular arguments that show I wasn’t. Oh and also trying to redefine words and being willfully ignorant  So much for your claims of proof, logic and evidence.  Okay, as has been asked by others, prove you were a Christian any better and more real than I was before I became an atheist.  Come on, now, OS, you’ve keep saying that there is a difference.  Time for you to give this evidence.  Can you heal people? Speak in tongues? Do any of JC’s miracles or better?  You have no more evidence that I did when I believed.  So yep, you are indeed as delusional as you would claim me as. It was very nice for you to put out the entire argument to support that conclusion right here.  Couldn’t have done it better myself.   
« Last Edit: December 07, 2011, 11:01:33 AM by velkyn »
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: Theists: why your "I used to be an atheist" stories fails
« Reply #144 on: December 07, 2011, 10:58:55 AM »
Unless by "religious belief" you mean "religious practices", your argument is utterly wrong. You cannot simply believe in something or stop believing in something through sheer force of will.

No, but you can decide to believe or disbelieve in something by choosing to put yourself in a situation that will likely lead to belief/disbelief.

For example, cult conditioning practices can be very effective.  Choosing to put yourself in a situation where you will undergo brainwashing techniques is not the same as choosing to believe something, true, but it's choosing to have yourself believe something.

And "normal" life can act in the same manner as brainwashing, at times, albeit over a longer time period.

edit: spelling
« Last Edit: December 07, 2011, 11:18:06 AM by Azdgari »
The highest moral human authority is copied by our Gandhi neurons through observation.